Animate Concrete

Computational methods for materializing architecture in motion


October 22, 2022 marks the launch of Dutch Design Week (DDW) in Eindhoven, one of the largest design events in Europe. Each year, DDW brings together over 2,600 designers and creatives for exhibitions, networking events, lectures, award ceremonies and debates. The nine-day event takes place at nine venues in Eindhoven. This year's theme, “Get Set,” challenges conventional ways of thinking about design.

DDU and the choreographers from Berlin-based studio tanzpol explore with their DDW-contribution Animate Concrete the interrelationship of choreography and architecture with their “Animate Concrete” project. What happens when you can dance with architectural elements? What, if seemingly massive pieces rock and move at the touch of your hand?

The installation consists of robotically manufactured hollow components whose shape and mass distribution enable kinetic behavior. The solid-looking but lightweight hollow bodies made of a concrete and an acrylic resin-mineral powder composite are manufactured using the rotomolding process. They roll, sway, rock and can be joined, disassembled and reconfigured into changeable structures and spatial configurations.

The goal of the research is to save building material resources by minimizing material consumption and reducing the weight of precast concrete components. In addition, the components are designed to be dry-jointed and reconfigurable to allow their reuse in future



Robots that build:

Project team:

Digital Design Unit (DDU), Prof. Dr.-Ing Oliver Tessmann, Samim Mehdizadeh M.Sc., Technische Universität Darmstadt

Ashkan Afsharian, Johana Kasperowitsch, tanzpol
Samim Mehdizadeh

Johanna Kasperowitsch, Susanne Grau

Scientific development and project management
Samim Mehdizadeh M.Sc.

Robotic fabrication
Danial Ahmad, Mirko Dutschke, Jingwei Fang, Bingqun Liu, Joshua Schäfer, Luke Schüßler, Daniel Schinkels, Malcolm Unger, Leon Witschorke

Design team
Nesrin Asma, Bingqun Liu, Aleyna Yanar, Ye Hong, Luke Schüßler, Daniel Schinkels, Kai Shima, Robin Wehrle, Jasmin Tietianiec, Malcolm Unger, Mashal Maria Hashimi, Jingwei Fang, Yishu Dai, Joshua Schäfer, Mirko Dutschke, Cristina Maria Calin, Sara Elif Yildiz, Tong Lee, Leonie Konz